Another key lesson in hobby robots/electronics

Following on from my second post, I just remembered some more key lessons that I learnt the hard way:

1. Molex / dupont / 2.54mm crimps…

   Go on ebay, get at least 100 male and 100 female, and a some 4 pin housings to put them in (you could go larger or smaller, but I find 4 pin housings to be a good alrounder). Use them generously, treat them like a consumable. It makes it so much easier when you have neat, insulated connections for you cables, and can separate modules simply by pulling appart two plugs.

 crimp housing 4 way 2 female crimp 2 male crimp 2

2. Get a crimping tool…
   Get a decent crimping tool to make it easy to use the above crimps.

crimp tool 2

3. Tin your soldering iron…
   Tin the hell out of your soldering iron, and do so regularly. Just google how to do it and buy a big roll of solder. Don’t fret about using all that solder for tinning, it’s a worthwhile investment and will make your soldering quicker and higher quality.

tinned soldering iron

4. Dupont jumper wires…
   So much better than using little pieces of wire for jumpers on your breadboard. Buy a mixed pack of assorted colours and lengths. I recommend getting mostly male-male jumpers (good for jumping between breadboard and arduino), as well as a smaller quantity of female-female jumpers (for extending between two male-male jumpers, adding to a male-male to get male-female).

Dupont jumpers

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